1st in Age Group, 2nd Overall Female: 2016 Alcatraz Challenge Aquathlon

Epic day out on the Alcatraz Challenge Aquathlon presented by Tri-California! Last year in 2015, I had a great time winning 1st in age group in the swim only race after a 5 year hiatus. This year, I opted for the Aquathlon which looks like this: jump out of a ferry next to Alcatraz island (right where that Great White Shark attack happened last year), swim 2 miles back to Marina Green in the choppiest conditions in years and then run 7 miles over the Golden Gate Bridge and back.

The San Francisco weather was gorgeous today with the sun beaming on the city skyline. There were some initial clouds around the Golden Gate Bridge which gradually disappeared before the race start. This year, we took a Hornblower cruise ferry which was pretty plush inside. There was a single, narrow door for the exit. The boat was filled with nervous excitement and anticipation from all of the racers. As we waited for the start, a group of us started singing Journey's 'Don't Stop Believing.' I was telling some first time racers that my best advise is just to keep swimming, no matter what.

It turns out that my advise was very fitting on this day. The water conditions were very choppy - most chop and current in years for this event. I decided to start right in the front of the pack and jumped out towards the left of the door. Another racer almost jumped on top of me out the door - he clipped by right arm. I started off swimming and realized I could see the lead boat given my early start. I made the decision at that time to track the lead boat for as long as possible. It turned out to be a great decision. My line was super straight. The waves and chop were high - it didn't phase me. At the times when I couldn't see the boat, I looked for Fort Mason, then the Palace of Fine Arts, landing finally in the Marina and Crissy Field beach. I knew my swim time was 5 minutes longer than last years - I didn't see a lot of people exiting the water though, indicating that I was in a good position.  

I started on the run, feet were numb and I felt tired.  I held on hoping for it to fade. Running up to the bridge via the stairs and trail is never fun although it felt shorter than in times past. I also recall how the Golden Gate Bridge is not flat - I felt slow initially heading over. On the backside of the span, I started getting into the run grove. I was on fire for the return trip - negative split on the whole 2nd half and finished really strong. I am humble and proud to win my first aquathlon! #badass #hyperfocus #roadtovineman2016#alcatrazchallenge #aquathlon #trimom #thegoodlife#coeursports #memorialday2016

RANK: 1st in Age Group, 2nd Overall Female
TOTAL TIME: 1:46:42
SWIM: 46:21. 2016 Alcatraz Challenge Aquathlon Swim Course
T1: 1:04
RUN: 59:17. 2016 Alcatraz Challenge Aquathlon Run Course

Complete Photo Album!

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